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Power of Autonomy with Selene Luna

Passionistas: We’re Amy and Nancy Harrington and we're so excited to be hosting our very first LinkedIn Audio event and collaboration with Amigos. We want to thank Danay Escanaverino and Dāli Rivera for inviting us to do this with them. And we also want to thank Julie DeLucca-Collins, who made the initial introduction to Danay and Dāli.

We are thrilled to get to know all of you in the Amigos community and introduce you to the amazing women in our Passionistas community. We know that there will be so much opportunity for connection and collaboration among all of us, and we can't wait to see what comes out of this beautiful collaboration.

One of the things we're most excited about with this collaboration with Amigos is getting to know all of you, so we'd love for you to drop comments for us and for our guest, Selena Luna, throughout the conversation. Toward the end of the chat with Selena, we're going to open it up so that people can raise their hands and they can come up onto the stage and ask any questions.

We would like to introduce to you our very special guest, Selene Luna. Besides being a dear friend, Selene is an actress, and she plays Soledad on FXs “Mayans MC,” which if you have not watched, you need to start watching right now so you can catch up in time for the next season, which they start filming soon.

And if you have watched it, then you know how amazing she is on the show. she's also the voice of Tía Rosita in Disney's Pixars Academy Award and Golden Globe Awards-winning animated film “Coco.” And she recently appeared in the Hulu Halloween special “Huluween Dragstravaganza.”

Selene is an established presence in Hollywood with multiple roles in movies and TV shows like “Celebrity Wife Swap,” Lionsgate’s “My Bloody Valentine 3D,” and Margaret Cho’s “The Cho Show,” and broke ground as a featured burlesque dancer in five national tours of the undisputed Queen of Burlesque, Dita Von Teese. Luna’s most celebrated standup comedy credit has been opening for several of Margaret Cho’s national tours. Luna took to Washington, DC by meeting with legislators like, U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, at the 2019 Conference on Independent Living to advocate for disability rights and spoke at a rally on Capitol Hill alongside U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer. This September Selene Luna spoke at the Power of Passionistas 2022, a three-day virtual event focused on diversity, equity and inclusion in the issues important to women

So please welcome, Selene Luna.

Selene Luna: Hi. Thank you so much. I'm always so thrilled to have a chat with Amy and Nancy, my dear friends. Thank you for the lovely intro. And I'm also looking forward to getting to know the listeners, and I'd love to chat with you guys as well.

Passionistas: Selene, what's the one thing you're most passionate?

Selene Luna: The one thing I'm most passionate about is autonomy because I believe that independence and self-reliance really is the most dignified way to live. And just to give you some background, for those of you who aren’t familiar with me, I'm a person with a disability. I'm a little person. I stand at three feet, nine inches.

So people like me, people with disabilities, navigate through a world where we are just not able to have equal access to the things that most people take for granted. And that creates a lot of reliance and dependence on others just for mere daily survival.

And so that is why I'm very, very passionate about autonomy because being able to do things on my own without relying on somebody, it's just life changing. And that's something that I don't think most people even think.

Passionistas: Yeah, absolutely. You’ve spoken at several of our events, and we've obviously had lot of private conversations about your experiences throughout your life. But I think it's really important to give people context to talk about what your childhood was like, especially as it relates to the education system, because I feel like you were given quite a disservice as you were growing up in the school system here in Los Angeles.

Ultimately people with disabilities have no autonomy, meaning we have no privacy in society. We don't really have the ability, in most cases, in most situations, to make decisions for ourselves.

Everything is decided for you from the minute that you were born. This is if you're born with a disability. So going back to my childhood and my lack of education in the public school system in Los Angeles where I grew up. I'm a, I grew up in the seventies and we're now in 2022, and there are children with disabilities still to this day facing the exact same things I faced in the seventies in the school system.

So, this part has changed a little bit, but back in the day, the school system insisted on having me in what they called special ed classes. Now, back then, special ed was pretty much a prison cell for any child with a disability. They were kept out of sight from the general population, and you're just really babysat all day long and not really given an education.

But my parents fought tooth and nail and they did not go for that because they knew I had the intellect. The school system’s decision to put me in special ed had nothing to do with my IQ or my intellectual ability. It was just based on my physical disability, which had nothing to do with my intellectual potential.

And so my parents fought to make sure I was integrated into the standard school system and I never once sat in a special ed class. And my heart breaks for those kids who were forced to, but I'm very grateful that my parents did everything they could to make sure I didn't fall through those cracks.

The additional battle though was that once I was integrated into the standard classroom system, even though I was sitting in those classes, I still was not getting the same education as my peers in the classroom because of my disability. Teachers, I don't know why, they were just overwhelmed having me in there.

I was just sitting there waiting to learn with all the other children, but I was often overlooked ignored. And there’s something that's really ingrained in my mind that I'll never forget. I was in high school in 10th grade. One of the reasons I don't have any education in literature or the classics that you really learn in 10th grade is that my English teacher pulled me aside and told me that I'm never going to need to learn any of this literature and that people like me don't need these skills or education.

So she, for the entire year, had me sit next to her literally like a pet. I was not given any homework assignments. I was told to not read anything because I wasn't going to need it because people like me don't need an education. So that's just one jarring example that stands out in my mind.

Also, in 11th grade, that's usually when a high school junior goes to meet with a high school counselor to figure out your plan after graduating high school.

Well, I went to my guidance counselor, and he told me to forget about college because college was not a place for people like me and higher learning was not a place for people like me. This happened throughout my entire education from kindergarten, all the way through 12th grade where I barely graduated, was barely literate.

It's amazing I function today. So, I had to spent most of my twenties struggling to survive because, physically, I couldn't just go get any job and I didn't have the education to get a non-labor job. So, most of my young adult life was an extreme struggle in poverty. And although this is a very personal, individual story, it's not unique at all within the disabled community.

So regardless of what the specific disability is, what hinders our progress in society is not our disability, but the non-disabled perspective towards disabled people. And so, the disability is hardly ever the issue. It's the attitudes towards us.

Passionistas: You said that it's changed somewhat, but not totally. So what is the current state of the education system for kids with disabilities now?

Selene Luna: I'll be full disclosure, I don't have all the statistics and information, but from what I've gathered in my personal involvement in activism there has definitely been progress. I mean, the fact that we're even talking about this on LinkedIn shows progress. So, there is progress in awareness and dialogue starting to happen. But it's absolutely not enough.

Another added layer to this issue is that there's progress for children with disabilities who have more advantages, that have educated parents — I might just put it bluntly — that are in a position of privilege versus.

Children who come from marginalized communities, their disability, that's just another layer. Their families are dealing with social injustice, economic and education inequalities. So people of color — those are the communities that are still suffering the adversity that I suffered in the seventies.

So there is progress, but within certain communities. There's a lot of inside inequalities within disability. Not every disabled child gets the same opportunities as a child with a disability who is in a more socioeconomic situation that's upwardly mobile.

Passionistas: It’s fair to say it just straightforwardly, there are people who have a certain level of privilege because of their race and economic standing. And the playing field still has not been leveled.

You talk a lot about intersectionality in that regard from your personal background coming from outside of the United States and the impact that had on the fact that you had a disability in conjunction with that.

So, talk about the activism that you do and the organization you're involved with and the good work you're doing out there right now.

Selene Luna: I'm a reluctant activist. The thing with being an activist with a disability, it's like you're just kind of forced to do it. I have to sound the alarm for people to listen or to try to motivate change or inspire change because if I don't, if I remain quiet — and it's not just me, there's a ton of us — if we remain quiet, we'll continue to be walked all over by society. I'm a reluctant activist because I don't enjoy it. I don't enjoy spending my time begging people to listen, begging people to look at statistics like trying to convince the non-disabled society that allowing us equal access to employment and education is not doing us a favor.

It's in fact civil rights that we're also entitled to. And so, it's very upsetting that we have to advocate what should just automatically be available to everybody.

But I have the personality and the platform to do it, so I'm happy to do it. And I couldn't live with myself if I didn't because nothing puts more fire in my belly than speaking up for unfairness and speaking up for those who can't speak up for themselves.

And so, I have really found a voice for myself by working with. SCRS. That is in an organization that I'm on the board of directors. They are Southern California Resource for Independent Living. This is an organization that services people with disabilities. Their mission is, each person with a disability is unique and has the same civil rights as people who do not.

Centers for Independent Living were created to be run by and for people with disabilities. They offer support, advocacy, and information on empowerment in the attainment of independence from a peer viewpoint. And that's one of the biggest problems, too, in the advocacy world for disability. A lot of organizations for disability are run by people who do not have a disability. And so could you imagine like, a man being the head of a feminist organization. That wouldn't fly in a million years. But in the disability community, it's actually standard. This is why I'm involved with this organization because from the very top, our CEO, everybody from the top executives are individuals with disabilities.

There is no greater voice, no more relating voice, and no more passionate voice. And the ultimate goal is to make sure that young children, young adults, transitioning from high school into the real world have access to higher education and economic equality.

Passionistas: Tell us a little bit more about some of the challenges that these people that you're talking about in this organization faced and some of the challenges you faced trying to gain an independent life. Because I think part of part of the problem is we don't know what we don't know. Amy and I have been so educated in our conversations with you about things that just honestly never occurred to us as people living an able-bodied life. Tell us a few of the things that you and other people struggle with to gain independence.

Selene Luna: Well first and foremost, the number one thing is equal access to education and being provided the tools to make sure we're able to attain the same education as everyone else. We need a little extra help with devices. Teachers who are properly trained to deal with a diverse population of students. Also, support from the actual school system to make sure each child with a disability not only has access to the same education as everyone else but is provided with the necessary tools that allows them success in education without having to navigate like they are burdens.

I mean, like for me, for example, I couldn't reach the desk and throughout my entire 12 years of schooling, I was given booster seats from Denny's restaurant to reach the desk. They were so uncomfortable and so slippery, and they used to hurt my hips. So [I want to make sure] that when a child is sitting in a chair trying to learn, they're not sitting there in pain and worrying that they're going to slip out of the seat. I'm just talking about real basic stuff. So just give us the tools so that we can focus on studying like everyone else.

And then also, you know then then it comes to the real-world employment. That is the biggest issue too. It's like we definitely need to not just talk about what it means to be an inclusive employer; you have to actually make accommodations in your business.

And so many young people who are just ready and skilled [in a type of] work are not even given the opportunity. Because as soon as the employer sees them, they instantly think, oh God, this is going to be a burden. I'm going to have to spend money. When statistically it's been proven that hiring an individual with a disability actually saves you money and actually makes your company more money.

And employees with disabilities have the lowest rates of worker's comp claims. Society really has it backwards. And employers and corporations need to stop seeing individuals with disabilities as a financial burden. They have to accommodate when it's actually an economic gain.

But that's part of the ableist culture we live in. You don't know what you don't know because it's never been put out there. People have no idea. And once an individual with a disability has economic independence, then they have the money to live independently and not have to turn to social services for just the basic things, which then saves the state a bunch of money. So it all comes down to education equality because that sets you up for economic success in the future.

Passionistas: I think a lot of people aren't really aware of the sub-minimum wage issue and how that continues to impact people with disabilities. So can you talk a bit about.

Selene Luna: Something a lot of people are not aware of, and I wasn't either for most of my life, is that there's a thing called sub-minimum wage, which is a law in the United States that allows employers to pay an employee with a disability as low as 22 cents an hour.

It's seen as a charitable cause so the person with a disability could be doing the same job as anyone else, but legally you're allowed to pay them as low as 22 cents an hour. Now that's in archaic law and it's been banned in most states. However, it is still legal in 13 states and was only recently taken off the books in the state of California.

It was something as recent as five years ago. We are put into this situation of forced systemic poverty. It's like a person with a disability has one roadblock after the next, and these are legal.

The biggest culprit in the country that takes advantage of the sub-minimum wage law is Goodwill Industries. The disabled employees that they hire to stock the store and do all the behind-the-scenes warehouse stuff, those guys are earning like 22 cents an hour. I'm sure it varies by location, depending on the state, but they are the biggest culprit. So as much as I love thrift shopping, I will not shop at the Goodwill.

Nancy and Amy have heard me go off on this, but that's one of the issues I have with feminism. In the feminist movement, one of the number one priorities is getting equal pay for women. But why aren't the same leaders in the feminist movement also fighting for equal pay for disabled women? Are they even aware of this?

To be fair, I know I sound very impassioned when I talk about this and it's because of my own personal struggles with being forced into poverty but I absolutely empathize that you don't know what you don't know. I mean, there's so much that I don't know about that I haven't started screaming about yet. But once I learn about it, I will. So just to be fair I know I have this contentious feeling towards the feminist movement and pay equality because it's hit me so personally, and I know that's not fair to the general movement. I am a feminist and very proud of it. But it's like sisters, we need to wake up.

Passionistas: I also think it goes back to what you started off saying, Selene, if we don't talk about it, then people aren't going to get educated. It's just any opportunity any of us have to just share one piece of information that they learn today with other people then we're on the right track of educating other people.

I think people from all marginalized communities feel this way. It’s not up to you to educate all of us on disability rights. but hopefully it will spark in anybody that's listening and the people that we share this information with, for us to educate ourselves more.

Selene: Yeah, I agree. And, again, I need it too. I need to learn from other people as well and becoming involved with the disabled community, just only in recent years I have learned so much. And I also learned that I need to be more aware of other communities.

I felt it was very important also for me to come on this program with you guys today because I'm not your typical LinkedIn audience. I only created a profile so I could join you guys today. LinkedIn is not in my career path. It's not part of my industry. However, this is the business world and I'm hoping to reach employers out there to just kind of think twice the next time they consider an applicant with a disability.

I just really want to thank the business community for taking the time to hear me out and being open to learn something new about the possibilities of what you can do within your own industry.

Passionistas: I'm glad you said that because it's so important that the business community hears and understands how they can improve the quality of life for their disabled employees.

And I think the other thing that I always like to bring up when we're talking about people living with disabilities is if nothing else, do something for selfish reasons because chances are at some point in our lives, we are all going to be disabled. The disability community stretches across many, many, many, many different kinds of abilities.

We all might end up someday in a wheelchair or with hearing loss or so many things. We all need to be educated to help our fellow man, but if nothing else, do it for selfish reasons so that when you come up against it yourself, you'll know what's going on.

Selene Luna: Exactly. And that's a great point. Thank you. It's my understanding that 80% of the population will become disabled at some point in their lives. And that's if were not born disabled. So this helps everybody.

Passionistas: Let's switch gears a little bit. Let's talk about your career. We've talked a little bit about the fact that you're from a marginalized community in the fact that you're Latinx. And in Hollywood, Latinx underrepresentation is still so disproportionate.

It’s getting slightly better but [there’s still a lot of progress to be made]. You have been involved in two amazing projects that really have bolstered Latinx representation in TV and film, one of which was “Coco,” the beautiful Disney movie, and the other is your current work on “Mayans MC.” Talk about how you personally have felt the impact of being involved with these two amazing projects.

Selene Luna: It’s still mind blowing to me. What really tipped things for me was getting a role for on Disney Pixar's “Coco,” because that was the first major Hollywood studio film in history to have an all-Latino cast — and not only being an actor with the disability, but that aside, I never in my wildest dreams thought I would see an American film with all Latino actors. And not just that but representing my culture — I'm Mexican — in the most beautiful, dignified, respectful way. I don't recall that ever happening.

And so that was elating to me that because I had struggled for 20 something years in the business of pursuing acting. And it was just one of those things that was so validating that I did not throw in the towel. It was so confirming. It's like, wow, it's a numbers game. Do not throw in the towel. Things do change. Society does progress.

Just one simple movie gave me hope for an entire future. And so that really kept me going. And then a few years later, “Mayans MC” came along and that has been, really the greatest blessing of my career.

And again, validating once again to not give up. Do not throw in the towel. The minute you lose hope or feel defeated, then it's instantly over for you. But if you just do the work, just keep going and have faith that there are creators out there who have the same passion that you have, it will come together.

And just a little background for those of you who are not familiar with “Mayans Mc,” it is a spinoff of ‘Sons of Anarchy.” It’s a TV crime drama about a Mexican motorcycle club gang and it's a pretty intense, serious drama. Not only is it Latino driven casting, but then they turn around and cast me. Not only am I a Mexican immigrant, I'm a woman and I'm a little person being on this show. The role that they created for me is the first time in television history that there is a dignified dramatic role for a brown little person. It is groundbreaking.

Both of these shows combined have been very fulfilling for me on a very soulful level. It gives me hope for the future, knowing that these people are out there fighting to create this level of inclusivity.

Passionistas: And I will say “Mayans” is addictive. If you haven't seen it, you have to watch it. And Selene’s performance is unbelievable.

Selene, do you mind telling us about how you began your stand-up career and how Margaret Cho helped you come to the realization that it was something you should explore?

Selene Luna: I would love to share it because it gives me an opportunity to talk about how wonderful Margaret Cho is. She's very dear and near to me. She’s a household name, but if you're not familiar, she is a trailblazer in the standup comedy world. She's really one of the first female comics that truly broke ground.

Before I ever knew her, I used to watch her standup comedy specials and just be so inspired and amazed by her. She’s a Korean woman and I'd never seen a woman of color taking the stage the way she did. And so eventually through the business we met, and we became good friends and she became my mentor for a while. And she really understood what it was like to be a marginalized woman. Her parents are Korean immigrants. And she understood and related to my Mexican immigrant family story, we have a lot in common in that way. She always had an ability to understand what I was going through.

And many years ago, we were working on her TV show, and she pulled me aside and she said you have to try standup because in standup comedy, nobody cares what you look like as long as you can make 'em laugh. And then suddenly a light bulb went on. I was like, oh my God, that's right. Because I was such a frustrated actor, feeling really degraded by Hollywood, because as a little person, the only audition opportunities I would get were just being creatures.

In Hollywood, little people in general are not viewed as human beings. Other than Peter Dinklage, can you name a little person who was not playing a non-human creature on television or film, or always some kind of monster or some kind of magical creature or something really faceless and voiceless? It's never just a human being. That was what I was struggling with I felt, why can't I be an artist like everyone else? Why not? I didn't understand that.

She said, go to standup comedy. That's where you control the narrative, and people will see you on your terms. And I did that and with her mentoring, I was able to develop a standup comedy career for a while. I learned a lot and it really helped me a lot. It was a great opportunity that I really got to explore as an artist.

And I found my voice. Now I see the payoff. It made me a better dramatic TV actor having all that standup experience. And so I'm doing what I love and I'm doing what I always wanted to do.

Passionistas: How did it make you a better TV actor?

Selene: I think on television, it's a complicated kind of animal. Working on sets, requires a lot of confidence. And to be clear, not arrogance, but confidence. There's a lot of pressure and you have to be confident enough to not lose focus. You have to be laser focused and considerate of everything that's happening around you. There are like 10 million moving parts all at once. There are a hundred people on set doing a different job while you're trying to deliver a crying scene.

You have to be able to stand still and remain measured and remain focused, and just know that you are there for your job. You have to execute this one particular job because an entire team is counting on you. Standup comedy taught me focus because if you can stand on stage in front of hundreds of people all by yourself, with no one else up there, and bomb… I mean, you, you bomb a lot when you're a comic. That's the only way you learn. I bombed a ton. And bombing on stage helped build my confidence because I realized bombing didn't kill anybody, it didn't kill me. I'm fine. Tomorrow's going to go on and no one really cares. And so I think that's where I gained the confidence to up my game in dramatic acting.

Passionistas: So we have a few questions. Dāli, do you want to ask a question?

Dāli Rivera: It's so nice to meet you, Selene. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I'm learning a lot. I have a question very specific to an intention that I have. I educate parents about bullying awareness and prevention, and one of the things that I've focused on is debunking certain stereotypes specifically about people with disabilities because they're the ones that are even worldwide targeted the most.

My question is, is there an educational program that you recommend that you've seen, maybe at a school or anywhere that maybe I can use as a guide or as a resource for parents to use to educate themselves regarding people with disabilities?

Selene Luna: That is a fantastic question. I do suggest the organization that I work with. You can contact them, and they'll point you in the right direction.

They are Southern California Resource Services for Independent Living. The website is

I also want to refer you to the National Council on Independent Living, which they do similar work as the Southern California Independent Living. Their website is And they have a wealth of resources.

Dāli Rivera: That's wonderful. Thank you so much, Selene.

Selene Luna: Thank you for asking. I really appreciate that question. Oh, cool. Thank you. You're welcome.

Passionistas: We have a question from Gloria.

Gloria Tabi: Oh, hello Selene, I'm speaking from Sydney, Australia. I just wanted to really echo what you said earlier. Thank you so much. I've just got a notebook writing like mad. And I'm in the area of also advocating against racism. So the things that you shared about feminists, really spoke to me and resonated because we talk about equality but we often don't think about people with disability or people that are on the receiving end of racism.

And because we have got really great listeners, I wanted to echo that so people can hear that. Also, people that are on the receiving end of racism. I'm not factored into the feminism movement, and it continues to leave us behind. It's really, really important that we bring those people into the fold, otherwise, what we are doing is continually widening that gap for people like that. So I appreciate your work and I thank you very much.

Selene Luna: Thank you so much, Gloria. I really appreciate.

Passionistas: We agree with you, Gloria. It's one of our big missions in what we are doing is to make sure that everybody's included, and all voices are included because it doesn't make sense to us that anybody would be kept out of this movement. We're never going to get anywhere without each other. So, we really appreciate that comment as well.

Julie DeLucca-Collins, would you like to unmute and ask your question?

Julie DeLucca-Collins: Hi, everybody. Thank you so much for hosting this to the Amigos and my friends the Passionistas.

It's such a pleasure to meet you, Selene. I've been a fan and I really want to thank you for the work that you're doing. I don't have a question. I do want to share some resources that I feel that are relevant to the conversation.

Number one, having been in education for over 20 years from the Administrator at the State Department of Ed in the US Department of Education. Parents need to understand that you have the IDA act, which is going to provide you with the right resources. And there's a new guidance. For those people who don't know, IDA is the law that actually requires school districts to provide services to the individuals with disabilities.

There's a new guidance that has been passed, so this is going to help students to really be able to provide and avoid disparities in education overall. So you want to make sure that you go to the US Department of Education website. There's a lot of resources in there because we have to be able to advocate for our children. I think that Dāli, as a parent educator, knows that we have to be able to be armed the right information to go into the schools and to ask for the right resources.

The other thing, too, is that to your point when one boat is lifted, all boats are lifted as well. There are a lot of organizations out there that are doing really great work. I thank you for the advocacy that you're doing on behalf of individuals with disabilities, but this is why marginalized communities need to come together and really be able to support each other.

I just learned the most of baffling thing that the Equal Rights Act for women was never passed. That's not something that was added to the Constitution. It was something that we wanted to have added. And all these years later, we as women are not looked by the Constitution as equal members with equal rights. And I think that when it comes to one group, if rights are denied to one group, then they're denied to others. And I just wanted to share that because as we continue to advocate for ourselves, continue to go into every area to really be able to create a more equitable world for all of us. And I think that you are trailing the way in everything that you are doing by being in the front, in center, being yourself and really being able to come into instances like this in which you're helping us educate others. I really appreciate that.

So I just wanted to bring that. Those are just my comments and I thank you again for hosting this room, ladies. I always love the kind of work that you're doing.

Selene Luna: I have to say thank you so much for sharing the education resource. That's fantastic. I really appreciate the support. It keeps me going.

Passionistas: Excellent. Thank you. Julie. That was great. So we're closing in on the end of the hour, but if anyone has any last questions for Selena, raise your hand and we can bring you up on the stage.

We posed a question to Selene at the beginning of the hour, and we pose it to you as a way for all of us to get to know each other a little better. What are you most passionate about?

Dāli Rivera: I have something. The reason why I started educating parents on bullying awareness and prevention is because of a personal experience — as a victim when I was a child and also as a parent who witnessed something like that happening to my child. And when I realized one of the root causes. I just felt like I had to do the research and share with as many people as possible because the ignorance that is in society is one of the reasons why so much inequality continues, and I figured if I can. share the knowledge that I've acquired in the field of bullying, awareness and prevention, then maybe I can help create a better society, maybe just in my region.

But that's what drives me and it makes me realize how my work intersects into so many areas. And I love it when I meet people like all of you really, who are doing such important work, and I really appreciate you all. That's all.

Passionistas: Thank you, Dāli. That was beautiful and we so appreciate you. Susie came up to the stage. So Susie, please feel free to unmute and say what you'd like to.

Susie Hansley: Hey, thank you so much. Yeah, my name's Susie Hansley and I'm a life coach and I'm also first Gen Mexican. So I just have really appreciated this opportunity to hear from you. I've heard of “Mayans MC” but I don't have cable.

Selene Luna: It's okay.

Susie Hansley: Is it going to go streaming

Selene Luna: It streams on Hulu.

Susie Hansley: Okay. Good to know. So having said that, I'm very excited to explore more of your work. Obviously, I love “Coco.” Everybody who is has a human heart, and especially those of us who are or Latinas… That was so cool, just that you got to be part of that, and I'm just really thrilled to know more about you and really explore everything you've done.

I am a fan of Margaret Cho. She was one of the first comedians of color that was really out there when I was coming up. And so I want to thank you for being here because I love your passion. I love the fact that you are obviously very committed to the things that matter. And I feel very akin to you in part because I am often one of those very passionate women about things and I feel have been silenced and unheard.

And in my case, it does have to do with being a first gen Latina with trauma, very intergenerational, early childhood trauma. All the different traumas that exist that we do not yet have enough knowledge and understanding of how to heal. And that for me having learned so many things through my own trauma journey of healing, that I now get to share with people, it is something.

Wonderful to just be in your energy and feel motivated and inspired to keep doing what I'm doing. Just keep speaking. We all have something to offer and especially those of us who have not been heard, it so matters for us to speak. And I just want to acknowledge you for being that, and I am so excited to continue follow your journey in your career and your political activism, and to be an ally and an advocate. That's all I wanted to say. Muchas gracias.

Selene Luna: Muchisimas gracias, Susie. And just hearing you now speak up, I absolutely relate to your story, also being an immigrant and also definitely relating to generational trauma. And I love the work that you're doing because it gives you the platform to be in a position like today to speak up. And the more we speak up, the more we're able to break the generational trauma and so we can help our future sisters and hermanitas and make sure they don't have to go through the things we've experienced. So I guess the bottom line is we’ve all got to speak up to support each.

Passionistas: Well said, Selene. And that is an excellent way to end our show today. Susie, thank you for your comment. And thank you all for joining us. Selene, this was the perfect way to kick off our first show on the Amigos network and with the Passionistas Project collaboration.

We hope you all enjoyed listening to today's show. Please follow us so you can keep in touch with us. Please reach out to us if we can do anything for you. And we hope to see you back here in a couple weeks for our next show.

Selene Luna: Thank you guys. I know we're wrapping it up. I just want to quickly say thank you so much Amy and Nancy, for having me and also for the work that you do. You're using your platform to create this dialogue for all of us. Thank you so very much and I want to thank everyone who tuned in to listen today. Just thank you for taking time out of your day just to hear me out. I really, really appreciate it. Thank you.

Passionistas: Thank you everyone. Have a great day.


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